While Carly Rae Jepsen’s teen pop summer anthem “Call Me Maybe” has crept its way into my subconscious on more than one occasion, the vapid lyrics and heard-it-before hook leave me wondering: why is it that so many of the songs that dominate my good-mood playlists never crack the Top 40?
Not to say that these songs offer any more emotionally elaborate lyrics, but at least they don’t leave me feeling like I’m still in middle school passing paper football-shaped notes to my BFF and watching movies with Freddie Prince Jr. in them.
These 5 songs are pop gold – without making you feel like a 13 year-old. Good luck getting them out of your head!
Abracadabra, Jessie J
While Beyonce’s off singing about halos and Rihanna’s finding love in hopeless places, this girl has been killin’ it with some huge singles. Abracadabra is easily as good as any of her Top 40 hits, if not better. Not super complex, but catchy as hell, and the slight edge to her voice prevents it from becoming like every other pop princess song out there. Magic has never been so sexy.
Love U Betta, Neon Hitch
Though this song’s less-appropriately titled counterpart did break into the billboard charts, it still hasn’t reached Top 40 status – and I can’t understand why. Its got the bassline of a major club hit, and I defy you not to hum the chorus repeatedly absolutely everywhere. It’s like “anything you can do I can do better” – except in this case she’s talking about BJs.
Dirty Sexy, Rusko
It’s hard to deny that the electronic/dubstep scene is completely owning right now. Whether you’re one of those “real music doesn’t come out of a computer” people or not, if you’re a pop fan you shouldn’t have any trouble considering this make-even-the-whitest-white-girl-feel-like-a-baller jam your latest guilty pleasure.
Marilyn Monroe, Nicki Minaj
Clearly Nicki Minaj is no stranger to major Top 40 music, but after releasing Starships and Right By My Side as singles off her latest album, it seems that the next logical choice for a hit would be this softer but still somehow badass song. Hook lyrics “call it a curse or just call me blessed / if you can’t handle my worst you ain’t gettin’ my best” should resonate well with pretty much anyone who has been in a relationship of any kind.
Sure she might be batshit crazy, but girl can rap.
Moving in the Dark, Neon Trees
I’ve been a fan of Neon Trees since they released Animal in 2010 (despite the song being painfully overplayed on the radio). Their sophomore release is off to a pretty good start, but this first track off the album had me sold way quicker than their newest single Everybody Talks. If you can get past the Madonna/Lady Gaga synth-y intro, the chorus will kick your ass.